Looking For Alaska | Teen Ink

Looking For Alaska MAG

December 19, 2018
By nutmeg28 BRONZE, Hartland, Wisconsin
nutmeg28 BRONZE, Hartland, Wisconsin
2 articles 0 photos 0 comments

When Miles started at a boarding school in the middle of sweltering Alabama he did not expect to meet someone by the name of Alaska, nor anyone who called themselves Colonel. But there he was in a small dorm room, with a short kid who smoked too many cigarettes for his own good and a beautiful blonde girl who was way out of his league and had a boyfriend anyway. In his unique way, John Green guides us through this story of Miles’ life-altering expedition in Looking for Alaska as he pushes through what will be both the best and worst times of his life.

This book starts how anyone would want their boarding school experience to start, involving both a drug and alcohol pushing roommate. Miles’ obsession with people’s last words had driven him to leave his boring life in Florida to find his Great Perhaps, the meaning of life and death.

From the sprawling grounds, old buildings, and fried bean burritos, Culver Creek has a life of its own, and it certainly isn’t what Miles was expecting from his dad’s description of his own time there. But he seems to fit right in after a short time and now has a brand new nickname of Pudge, ironic because he’s all skin and bones. After a small incident where he ends up duct-taped and thrown into a lake, life seems to be going well. His friendship with Colonel and Alaska seems to be growing stronger every day and Miles seems to be finding himself falling a little bit in love with a girl out of his reach. Then, when the reader is least expecting it, Miles and Colonel’s world is turned upside down and life will never be the same.

John Green, the author of this amazing book, somehow manages to cram the stories of Miles, Colonel, and Alaska into a short 221 pages. He packs in teen drama, teen romance, and an unexpected tragic death all into one well written masterpiece. Green captivates the reader in a story that seems mundane on the surface but ends up being a compelling adventure. His writing style is relatable and his characters are quirky and enjoyable enough that you don’t want to stop getting to know them. Weaving Miles’ seemingly boring life into the exciting tale of all things Alaska and Colonel is nothing short of genius. The description of this trio of friends and their tragic downfall leaves the reader aching for more. And all while reading, the reader is acutely aware of the page in the middle of the book colored darker than all of the others, alluding to the event that triggers this downfall. After this big event, the rest of the book doesn’t have the same happy feel as the first half of the book did, but this shouldn’t deter you from finishing it.

Looking for Alaska is a comfort book, the book I turn to when I just want something to curl up with in a comfy chair with a mug of hot chocolate. The book I have read multiple times over the last five years. I find different meanings each time. Read this masterpiece and maybe you’ll find your own Great Perhaps among the pages of this book.

The author's comments:

This piece is about one of my favorite books. I have read this book several times and I finally wanted other people to hear about its genius. Enjoy. 

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This article has 2 comments.

ssoma BRONZE said...
on Jul. 22 2021 at 11:33 am
ssoma BRONZE, Mount Laurel, New Jersey
3 articles 0 photos 2 comments
This review has convinced me to maybe try reading this book!

Caydee BRONZE said...
on Jul. 2 2020 at 4:43 pm
Caydee BRONZE, Oakland, Illinois
3 articles 2 photos 7 comments
I loved this book so much. Green is such a literary genius! Your review is incredibly well-written. Great job! 😁